The Federated Ogoni Women Association (FOWA), has commended the Federal Government for approving a special training and empowerment scheme for 1,200 Ogoni women in Rivers.
The Secretary of FOWA, Mrs Charity Nwido, who spoke in an interview with Newsverge on Monday in Port Harcourt, said the scheme would assist women who were impacted negatively by pollution.
Nwido noted that the training, an aspect of the Federal Government’s Ogoni clean-up programme, was aimed at providing alternative livelihood for the female peasant farmers.
She said that the training programme would assist women in the area who she said suffered more than 60 per cent of the impact of the environmental degradation in Ogoni land.
“Ogoni women bear over 60 per cent of this environmental pollution because they form the bulk of the farming population of the area.
Nwido said because of the environmental degradation, women in Ogoni land recorded poor harvest and diminished income.
She said: “women development is essential to a successful clean-up as recommended by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report.
“I believe that this training programme will provide opportunities for the Ogoni women to engage in other means of livelihood, pending when the soil will have been restored for normal agricultural activities.’’
She appealed to the Federal Government to establish a cottage hospital in the area that would effectively take care of the health challenges of the people, especially women and children.